Dinner and a Song

Grace Family, I hope and pray that you are fully engaging in the beauty and the ache of this Passion Week.  My prayer is that we would all take what remains of this week slowly and reverently.  It is a somber time, but I hope we can really dig in to the somberness, it will make the celebration of Sunday that much more meaningful!

Today, on this Maundy Thursday, I want to share with you a devotion from Russ Ramsey that really resonated with me. I hope it does the same for you!  It's adapted from his book Behold the King of Glory.


"The Thursday prior to Jesus’ crucifixion fills many pages in Scripture.

It began with John and Peter securing the upper room (Matthew 26:17-19). There in that room, Jesus would wash His disciples’ feet, explaining He had come to make them clean (John 13:1-20). As they began to eat, Jesus told them that one of them was about to betray Him. Each disciple wondered if He meant them. Meanwhile, Jesus discreetly dispatched Judas to do what he intended (John 13:21-30).

During this last supper, Jesus set apart the Passover bread and cup and reassigned—or better, perfected—their meaning. The bread is His Body. The cup is His blood. This meal would no longer primarily remind them of how God delivered their forefathers from the external tyranny of Pharaoh. Now it would remind them of how Christ delivered them from the internal tyranny of their own guilt and sin against God (Luke 22:14-23).

Then Jesus prayed for them, His friends, and for those who would come to know Him through their testimony. He prayed that His Father would make them one (John 17). After praying, Jesus rose to His feet and asked His disciples to stand with Him to sing a doxology over their suspended, unfinished Passover meal. Jesus led them in the traditional Passover song, Psalm 118, about how the stone the builders rejected had become the cornerstone, and how the steadfast love of the Lord endures forever.

To pause and lead His disciples in a song like this, at this particular moment, shows the strength of Jesus’ resolve to face His impending arrest and crucifixion. The Gospel accounts tell us that He started that Last Supper overwhelmed with sorrow, and that later in Gethsemane His sweat became like drops of blood (John 13:21, Luke 22:44). In the middle of that tension, Jesus sang of the faithfulness of God.

Think about that for a moment: one of the things Jesus did on the night He was betrayed was sing (Matthew 26:30).

When they finished singing, Jesus led His disciples out to the Mount of Olives, to one of their regular meeting places—the Garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:26-32). But Jesus didn’t go there only to pray. He also went there to wait. Soon a line of torches snaked their way toward Him through the darkness (Mark 14:42-46). This was what He had been waiting for."

Jesus sang, he SANG, the night before he died. What amazes me even more about this is what he sang. Psalm 118 says ‘Give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His love endures forever’. But then the Psalm goes on to foreshadow the suffering Jesus would endure. Jesus SANG, praising God for the suffering he was about to endure on our behalf.

Grace Family, I hope and pray that you are fully engaging in the beauty and the ache of this Passion Week.  My prayer is that we would all take what remains of this week slowly and reverently.  It is a somber time, but I hope we can really dig in to the somberness, it will make the celebration of Sunday that much more meaningful!

-Nicole Cotts

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